"Extol the Lord, Jerusalem;
praise your God, Zion.
He strengthens the bars of your gates
and blesses your people within you.
He grants peace to your borders
and satisfies you with the finest of wheat" - Psalm 147:12-14.
God is not only concerned for the individual, singular you. He is also concerned for the corporate you, which in modern terms is the local church. Paul wrote 13 epistles, four to individuals, and nine to churches outlining both theological issues, but also expected behavioral norms for the body of Christ in general. In today's verses, we see this pattern continue, for the psalmist was addressing Jerusalem as a whole, describing how the Lord would bless the residents of the city as a while with security, peace and food. There was a credit card company who had a slogan that stated, "Membership has its privileges," the same can be said for involvement in a local church, where you are expected to contribute your finances and spiritual gifts in return for God's blessings. Paul wrote this about your involvement in the church: "What then shall we say, brothers and sisters? When you come together, each of you has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. Everything must be done so that the church may be built up" (1 Corinthians 14:26). Are you coming together with other believers for prayer, worship and Word ministry? Are you acting in the best interests of your church, building up the body of Christ through your presence? What blessings have you received for doing so?
Today's reading - Psalms 146-150